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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Sarah
    • By MSE Sarah 24th Nov 17, 12:35 PM
    • 106Posts
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    MSE Sarah
    Money Moral Dilemma: Should I buy my friend a wedding gift?
    • #1
    • 24th Nov 17, 12:35 PM
    Money Moral Dilemma: Should I buy my friend a wedding gift? 24th Nov 17 at 12:35 PM
    This week's MoneySaver who wants advice asks...

    I'm a bridesmaid for one of my best friends this year. All the bridesmaids collectively agreed a budget for the hen party to keep things fair. For various reasons we have gone way over budget, but the bride also asked us to pay for our own dress alterations (£75+), shoes (£30+) and hair styling (£50+). Can I get away with not buying a wedding gift?

    Unfortunately the MSE team can't always answer money moral dilemma questions as contributions are often emailed in or suggested in person. They are intended to be enjoyed as a point of debate and discussed at face value.

    If you haven’t already, join the forum to reply!

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Page 1
    • allisoninredditch
    • By allisoninredditch 28th Nov 17, 10:57 PM
    • 6 Posts
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    allisoninredditch
    • #2
    • 28th Nov 17, 10:57 PM
    • #2
    • 28th Nov 17, 10:57 PM
    no its her wedding you shouldnt be paying for alterations very cheeky indeed
    good friends are like stars you dont always see them but they are always there.... what goes around comes around.....treat others as you'd like to be treated yourself....good manners dont cost a penny....If only everything in life was as reliable...AS ME !! It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice.......
    • gloriouslyhappy
    • By gloriouslyhappy 29th Nov 17, 12:09 AM
    • 353 Posts
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    gloriouslyhappy
    • #3
    • 29th Nov 17, 12:09 AM
    Your presence is your present - cheesy but true.
    • #3
    • 29th Nov 17, 12:09 AM
    You say you've gone way over the agreed budget and on top of that, the bride has also asked you to pay another £150+ for dress alterations, shoes and hair styling. I think just going along with all that constitutes a wedding gift already so I'd be looking out for a nice card and maybe putting something personal together like a little photo album of the bride's 'journey' to the altar, you could include photos of the the hen party, for example.
    • Gissafreebe
    • By Gissafreebe 29th Nov 17, 6:52 AM
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    Gissafreebe
    • #4
    • 29th Nov 17, 6:52 AM
    Of Course
    • #4
    • 29th Nov 17, 6:52 AM
    Short answer is an absolute resounding YES. She will never ever forget or forgive you that you did not give her a wedding present. .... if you don't want to pay for alterations then don't and explain why. there may be another way round things
    • keithinfife
    • By keithinfife 29th Nov 17, 7:43 AM
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    keithinfife
    • #5
    • 29th Nov 17, 7:43 AM
    • #5
    • 29th Nov 17, 7:43 AM
    Hmmm....

    On balance, I'd say you should, but not a big one (e.g. no more than £50.) It's not her fault that the hen party has gone way over budget - does she know? - but, on the other hand, she shouldn't be expecting you to pay for the dress alterations and hair styling if there is a certain way she wants it done.
    • iclayt
    • By iclayt 29th Nov 17, 7:59 AM
    • 418 Posts
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    iclayt
    • #6
    • 29th Nov 17, 7:59 AM
    • #6
    • 29th Nov 17, 7:59 AM
    One of my best friends of over 25 years didn't get me a wedding present, because I think they felt they'd spent a lot on travel and accommodation to be there (although it was a total of 4 hours travelling for them and two nights in a travelodge). However, I was hurt not to get something from her. I didn't say anything, but I would have appreciated something homemade or perhaps a picture of the two of us, which were the sorts of things she'd make as presents for birthdays and Christmas. When it came to her own wedding I dithered for ages over whether to get her anything - despite her getting married in the middle of nowhere and us having 12 hours total driving time, all the petrol and £200 on accommodation, I found something small and personal I hoped she'd like. Maybe a small part of me wanted to make a point but ultimately she's my best friend and it felt wrong not to get her something, and just as wrong to make a fuss that she didn't get me something.

    I think my point is if it's possible to get her something within a reasonable budget, do so, as she will remember that you didn't!
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 29th Nov 17, 8:44 AM
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    Pollycat
    • #7
    • 29th Nov 17, 8:44 AM
    • #7
    • 29th Nov 17, 8:44 AM
    I think it's not so much a question of should you buy her a wedding present but more should she be asking you to pay for alterations to your bridesmaid dress and pay for your hair to be styled?
    • silvercar
    • By silvercar 29th Nov 17, 9:26 AM
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    silvercar
    • #8
    • 29th Nov 17, 9:26 AM
    • #8
    • 29th Nov 17, 9:26 AM
    Close enough to be asked to be a bridesmaid, close enough to buy a wedding present.
    • AylesburyDuck
    • By AylesburyDuck 29th Nov 17, 9:30 AM
    • 690 Posts
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    AylesburyDuck
    • #9
    • 29th Nov 17, 9:30 AM
    • #9
    • 29th Nov 17, 9:30 AM
    Hair, i'd have been planning to get my hair done anyway for a wedding so no moaning on that one, shoes, well if they are matching shoes picked by her (she should pay), if shoes picked by you then your cost seeing as presumably you wouldnt have been going bare foot. Absolute total cheek getting you to pay for alterations. Big no!
    However, seeing as that horse has already bolted, then yes, of course you still buy her a present, shes your best friend, it's what we do, presumably you want to remain her best friend.
    As for the other lot, i'd have spoken up at the time of its unfairness, if it was indeed unfair.
    ,
    Fully paid up member of the ignore button club.
    If it walks like a Duck, quacks like a Duck, it's a Duck.
    • tain
    • By tain 29th Nov 17, 9:32 AM
    • 480 Posts
    • 595 Thanks
    tain
    We had this at a friends wedding. My wife was a bridesmaid and had to pay for the exact things you've already mentioned. They went abroad for her hen do as well, which came to about £600+ we worked out. Then we needed to pay for travel and accommodation to their wedding.

    On top of that, all the bridesmaids and close friends put in about £40 each to buy a joint bunch of gifts. We thought that was it, but apparently we should have also put money in their card like they asked. I seriously don't know where people get off.

    Anyway, we figured it didn't matter as we were getting married the next year so they just shouldn't put money in our card, but they did. Even though they had to pay for nothing at all for our wedding (including free drinks the entire night), we still feel really guilty for not putting that money in the card, as they clearly expected it.

    Depends if the ongoing guilt is worth £50 really.
    Last edited by tain; 29-11-2017 at 9:51 AM.
    • michelle09
    • By michelle09 29th Nov 17, 9:32 AM
    • 471 Posts
    • 1,898 Thanks
    michelle09
    I think it depends on you and your relationship with the bride. My best friend and I now live in different countries - and neither of us bought a wedding gift for the other. Instead, we bought flights and spent a week with each other before our respective weddings instead.

    It has not changed our friendship at all, and I don't expect it to. But then, I didn't keep a track of who didn't send us a gift, just wrote thank you cards based on the gift cards. More important things to worry about in life than having friends that can afford fancy presents.
    • Red-Squirrel
    • By Red-Squirrel 29th Nov 17, 9:39 AM
    • 2,040 Posts
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    Red-Squirrel
    but the bride also asked us to pay for our own dress alterations (£75+), shoes (£30+) and hair styling (£50+). Can I get away with not buying a wedding gift?
    I think you've already spent £155 on a gift of her choosing, so a card will definitely do now.
    • hazyjo
    • By hazyjo 29th Nov 17, 10:03 AM
    • 9,846 Posts
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    hazyjo
    I would definitely buy something thoughtful - not expensive. Lots of ideas on the internet (ebay), etc. Search with a top budget of say £10/15.
    2017 wins: Opera tickets; film preview; lipstick; Ideal Home Show tickets + afternoon tea & bottle of Champagne; 2 cases of NKD; notebook; bath rack; books; film Premiere; Broadchurch DVDs; lipbalms; hamper (food/wine/Echo Dot/Jo Malone goodies); Avon lippies; cowhide rug; Windsor luxury break, foundation; Flybe flight
    • pugsydog
    • By pugsydog 29th Nov 17, 10:05 AM
    • 7 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    pugsydog
    Maybe a nice sewing set would be an idea! I wouldn’t have dreamed of asking my bridesmaids to pay for any of it. My wedding, my cost. I stayed within a set budget. She should have done so too. Just buy something small as a token and explain that you can’t afford more because of her extra costs. A true friend should understand.
    • gaving7095
    • By gaving7095 29th Nov 17, 10:08 AM
    • 136 Posts
    • 109 Thanks
    gaving7095
    You can "get away with it" as it's not a crime, however whether your friend decides to hold something against you or not is up to her. I think the group consensus is that yes she probably would hold it against you, so therefore best to buy a gift.
    I would doubt the value of a friend who would be that petty but I'm a man so what do I know? XD
    • Lovingwales
    • By Lovingwales 29th Nov 17, 10:33 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Lovingwales
    No absolutely not! You have already paid out a lot of money on her wedding, Enjoy the day with her without incurring anymore expense.
    • Tammykitty
    • By Tammykitty 29th Nov 17, 10:52 AM
    • 545 Posts
    • 1,167 Thanks
    Tammykitty
    I would get a token gift, probably something personal and homemade.


    You should not be paying for the dress alterations, or (presuming you are getting these specifically to the brides wishes) the shoes or hair though.


    The hen do going over budget is not the bride's fault, so that's irrelevant.
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    • Jwebb
    • By Jwebb 29th Nov 17, 11:14 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    Jwebb
    No i wouldnt. I never brought a gift to my sisters wedding or half my friends because i was skint by the end of the hen do and other bits they planned! Staying in hotels or travelling abroad it all adds up. If ur friend is a true friend they wouldnt expect it. Instead do something sentimental like a hen do scrap book or a nice photo in a pretty frame.
    • annabelinda12
    • By annabelinda12 29th Nov 17, 11:32 AM
    • 30 Posts
    • 35 Thanks
    annabelinda12
    Out of hand
    My son and daughter have also faced this dilemma. My daughters friend was meant to be having a hen weekend at a local spa hotel but then changed it to a weekend in Italy. Original cost £150 each, new cost £400. The girls also put in £30 each for a big joint wedding gift. A month before the big day, a wedding gift list was sent to all of them with a note saying the bride thought they’d like to give individual gifts!. One of my sons friends weddings is being held in France, because the bride loves France. He’s been asked to be an usher, cost £600 which having not long graduated, he just doesn’t have. A lot of the guests are grumbling but no one, apart from him, is ‘brave’ enough to say sorry I can’t come as I can’t afford it’ This couple have sent out a gift list where the cheapest item is £100!
    Sorry, I think it’s all gotten crazy. You have shelled out enough already. A nice, card, possibly home made or individualised is ample.
    • Pollycat
    • By Pollycat 29th Nov 17, 11:38 AM
    • 18,593 Posts
    • 47,858 Thanks
    Pollycat
    My son and daughter have also faced this dilemma. My daughters friend was meant to be having a hen weekend at a local spa hotel but then changed it to a weekend in Italy. Original cost £150 each, new cost £400. The girls also put in £30 each for a big joint wedding gift. A month before the big day, a wedding gift list was sent to all of them with a note saying the bride thought they’d like to give individual gifts!. One of my sons friends weddings is being held in France, because the bride loves France. He’s been asked to be an usher, cost £600 which having not long graduated, he just doesn’t have. A lot of the guests are grumbling but no one, apart from him, is ‘brave’ enough to say sorry I can’t come as I can’t afford it’ This couple have sent out a gift list where the cheapest item is £100!
    Sorry, I think it’s all gotten crazy. You have shelled out enough already. A nice, card, possibly home made or individualised is ample.
    Originally posted by annabelinda12
    You're right.
    It has 'all gotten crazy'.
    And until other people follow your (very sensible) son and say 'no, this is just too much', brides & grooms will continue to up the wedding ante.
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